Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Texas Sized Footprints...

For spring break this year I journeyed to the wonderful state of Texas with my beautiful cousin Alesha.
My great aunt and uncle (basically my third set of grandparents) moved down there this last fall and it was time for me to make good on my promise to come visit them.

I wish I could describe to you how incredible they are.
I don't have enough time or space to do that, though.
So, take my word for it...they are incredible. 
These last few years they have seen some rough times...some really rough times to be exact.
And yet, through it all they have praised God and allowed Him to be their rock and strength.
I can not even begin to tell you what incredible role models and mentors they are in my life!

You could say I was a little excited to go spend a week with them!

Leading up to Texas (and all throughout this year, really) I've been struggling with trusting in God's provision. It's not that I didn't trust Him per se ...but I just never felt fully provided for in this earthly realm. I felt like God's calling carried a bigger price tag than I was going to be able to come up with.
And I think that was kind of His point.

As a result of my skeptical trust, I rarely found myself giving freely of my money...if at all.
And for weeks before my trip I kept hearing God tell me to prepare myself for a lesson in His provision and giving.

Great! I am already feeling a huge financial burden, God! The last thing I need is for you to ask me to give all my money away to someone on this trip. Please just don't ask me to give away all my money. PLEASE. 

So, I budgeted. And I use that term loosely...because it's really hard to budget when you don't really have any money to work with.
But, I budgeted anyways. And I set aside so much for gas and so much for meals....and so on.

Our first meal of the trip was payed for by my lovely mother who came down to Huntington to say farewell. Alesha and I left the tip and chalked it up to a nice start to our vacation.

And then we began the journey.
After twenty hours of driving, we hit a little speed bump and had to make an unforeseen pitstop at a hotel. That's not in the budget God! We can't afford this! 
So, we found the cheapest motel we could find (note to self: saving money on a hotel is not always worth it) and we crashed...or at least we tried to. With the fighting out back, the dirty sheets, and the broken heater, it was all we could do to get a few hours of shut eye that night!
The next day we had a meal with a friend who lived nearby...once again, the tab was picked up and we were left with the tip.

And then we drove some more….and some more….and some more.Eventually, we made it! Safe and sound.

We went out for dinner…ironically enough, to Texas Roadhouse…in Texas. As we got ready to leave I went to pay for my meal, only to find my wonderful Papa had already payed. Our conversation went a little something like this.“Papa! No, please. I can get it!”“It’s already done, Lauren. You’re taken care of.”“Well at least let me leave the tip.”“Nope. It’s already done.”“Well, you’re not going to pay for things this the whole trip!”“Okay, maybe you can pay tomorrow…”“Okay.” 
Silly me. So naive!

The next day we had the same conversation…and once again, he won. Day in and day out, he continued to pay for meals, tickets, gas…everything. From that first night to the moment we left I don’t think I payed for a single thing. Not. One. Single. Thing.

Of course, their financial provision was an incredible blessing…but it also revealed to me that lesson God had promised me. Through their generous giving God simply reminded me: I will provide. If He has called me to it, He has a plan to see it through.

And as I’m piling up a mountain of school debt, struggling to pay off the last of my car, and feeling called to take a trip this summer that my part-time job simply hasn’t given me enough money for I hear God saying the same words of my Papa,“It’s already done, Lauren. You’re taken care of.”

There He is, standing at the end of my life, knowing exactly how He is going to provide in this tiny, minute little situation. He’s already payed the whole bill, tip and all. No amount of “speed bumps” or pitstops are unforeseen to Him, nor do they throw Him off. He knows exactly how He is going to provide.

So, I’m going to praise Him for the provision He has already planned…whatever that may be!

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